Perform the Marshmallow Challenge

Created by : OpenDecide Lab
Last update : August 6, 2018


Team-building activities usually take up a lot of time and/or a considerable disbursement of money.


  • The Marshmallow Challenge is a quick team-building activity (it takes 30-45 minutes) that will cost you no money to complete. In spite of its simplicity, its participants have a lot of fun and it's quite challenging as well.
  • This is how it works: teams have 18 minutes to build the tallest free-standing structure, using only 20 sticks of spaghetti, one marshmallow, one yard of string and one yard of tape.
  • Introduced by Peter Skillman, it was originally used as a tool for beginners in design thinking to practice prototyping in testing, but the challenge can be useful for everybody. The key of the challenge is that it forces people to collaborate very quickly. It is useful to engage your employees and create alignment in your teams.
  • Consider running this challenge to kickstart a meeting, get a team into a creative state of mind, or simply as a fun activity to help peers get to know each other.



Schedule the meeting

You will need 30 to 45 minutes on average to run the challenge.


Assemble teams of 3-4

Make sure that each team has a small table. Teams are reduced to 3-4 people but there isn't a limit on the number of participants that take part in the challenge.

OpenDecide Lab

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